HDNet’s Inside MMA Extensive Coverage of UFC-Strikeforce Purchase, Shamrock Comments on Sale

March 22, 2011

Inside MMA worked around the clock to provide extensive coverage regarding Zuffa’s purchase of Strikeforce, which was featured Friday night on HDNet. The coverage included interviews with Dana White, Scott Coker, and the perspective of various fighters affected by the transaction.

Here are a few clips HDNet has released from the coverage, though I would highly recommend viewing the full episode on HDNet to see the great work done.


Frank Shamrock also commented on the deal to MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani, and had very good insight on the situation:

“I can’t say I saw it coming but I know the demands of Strikeforce were high and I knew the financial partners were strained and weren’t interested in the big risks,” Shamrock said. “I knew change was coming, I didn’t know we were going to change that much.”

According to Shamrock, Coker spent a lot of money to compete in the marketplace. For SVSE, Strikeforce became too much of a risk.

“They got tired of writing big checks and not seeing the big return,” he said. “For them [the older established sports model is] the kind of business they wanted to be in. They didn’t want to be in the visionary, high-risk startup kind of MMA business.”


Shamrock also commented on Coker’s feelings towards selling the promotion he built from the ground up for years:

Shamrock doesn’t think Coker wanted Strikeforce sold. Shamrock described Strikeforce as Coker’s “baby” and it was Coker’s dream to promote the biggest fights in the world and to turn Strikeforce into a billion dollar company.

“I think it was too early for Scott. I don’t think he wanted to get out this early,” Shamrock said. “Scott was in it for the long haul. He probably had another five years, but time and business is everything. This was the UFC’s time to make a move and they did.”


Payout Perspective:

Inside MMA did a great job covering the Strikeforce purchase, getting exclusive interviews with Dana White, Scott Coker, and several fighter who were affected by the move.  Here are some key notes from the interviews:

– Coker mentions that Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment wanted to focus on bringing another sports franchise to San Jose, so he had to look for other business partners because he wanted to stay in MMA…  Payout Perspective: It is said that SVSE is bidding to bring an NBA team to San Jose and the HP Pavilion in addition to growing the San Jose Sharks NHL franchise.

– Coker believes that Zuffa will continue the Strikeforce brand because the brand is “worthy of continuing forward and growing”, believes it has value.

– Coker tells a story about bringing his 1 marketing person to a meeting with UFC’s marketing team of about 25.

– Coker addressed the issue of M-1 and Fedor, saying that Fedor was definitely an expensive item but added value to Strikeforce and the brand.  Expects Fedor to be back fighting for Strikeforce in late July or mid August.

– Believes that getting back on CBS is still a possibility and that he will do what he can to get the UFC in Japan with his connections and help bridge the gap.

– When asked about how Scott felt about the sale of Strikeforce, he said “It’s a reality that’s real.”

2 Responses to “HDNet’s Inside MMA Extensive Coverage of UFC-Strikeforce Purchase, Shamrock Comments on Sale”

  1. Machiel Van on March 23rd, 2011 7:03 AM

    It’s interesting that Shamrock chose to hold his tongue here. He can’t of been happy about the sale, given the amount of work he put into promoting the Strikeforce MMA brand when it began, and his disdain for Zuffa’s vision for MMA.

  2. John S. on March 24th, 2011 7:22 AM

    Straka’s interview with Dana was embarrassing. Not only did he fail to ask any probing questions he combined it with enough ass kissing that I think it prudent he stop by the free clinic. Terrible.

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